FLUIDITY?,AND HOW DOES THAT MANIFEST FOR ME?
(GENTLE LAUGH) I AM A WEIRD, SORT-OF REBORN HIPPY CHICK, WHO BELIEVES IN BEING CONNECTED THE UNIVERSE. EVERYTHING HAS A MEANING AND CONNECTION. I AM WATER SIGN, AND I HAVE A DEEP CONNECTION TO WATER. I THINK WATER RULES ME. I THINK THAT EVERYONE HAS A PARTICULAR EMOLUMENT THAT RULES THEIR EXPRESSIONS; FOR MYSELF, FLUIDITY IS MY THING. (…) I IMAGINE I AM AN EARTHBOUND MERMAID. INTERVIEW: APRIL 2011, CONDUCTED BY SALLY.
In describing her dancing, Marjory Smarth says, “Fluidity is my thing. I think I am the earthbound mermaid. If there were a way to describe the way I dance -- I have a lightness to my movement and sometimes it is as if my feet don’t even touch the ground.”
Haitian-born, she came to NYC as a child. Her household was filled with dancing and “music, all day, every day.” Before she “could verbalize the word “dance,” I was dancing.” She first entered into the cipher when she was four-years old at her older sister Josie’s junior-high school dance. Josie (her babysitter) asked “Marjory, you wanna dance?” and it broke the ice. Then as an adolescent, she ciphered to break up “the testosterone circles” adding, “You know, I love them. But, I just had to let them know sisters are in the room, too. I have my point of view. And they had to hear it.”
She and her long-time buddy, Ejoe Wilson, did weekend dancing marathons from Friday to Monday morning, walking across Manhattan, up to the Bronx, and downtown, crossing bridges, picking up people “that loved to dance with us, going from street jam to street jam, battling. Come and ‘wreck it’ really quick! Then move on.” Smarth attended Notre Dame High School then the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC. She started clubbing hardcore at 17, meeting the older generation. “…[We] were some wild children in the clubs. But we learned club etiquette because Archie [Burnett] and Willi [Ninja] were very embracing. And Barbara [Tucker] was instantly my sister. We saw each other dancing in the Tunnel, and we were like, “Girl, you understand me!”
By age 19, Smarth was supporting herself by dancing in music videos, performances, and teaching. Although she was always teaching, by 1994 she was working internationally and has taught on all the continents (except Antarctica), earning her position as the most respected female House dance teacher. “I just open the threshold, that’s all,” she says. “They have to find their own eloquence.”